Oak for Brisket?

Discussion in 'Beef' started by john3198, Dec 19, 2009.

  1. john3198

    john3198 Smoking Fanatic

    Ok. I'm definately gonna take the plunge and do a brisket next week. All these recent posts on brisket are killing me. Tried one years ago when I first got the vertical Brinkman and had no clue what I was doing - hence it was a disaster. Haven't tried it since.

    However, thanks to this great forum, I am ready to attack this BBQ icon once again. Will do some more homework on the threads between now and then to figure out the details.

    One question - scored a 100 lbs of seasoned red oak today for a few bucks. Will this work for Brisket? Also have some Pecan and of course store bought Hickory and Mesquite.

    What do you guys recommend?
  2. pineywoods

    pineywoods Smoking Guru Staff Member Administrator Group Lead SMF Premier Member

    Oak is very good for brisket to me. I consider it just a bit milder than hickory but very close at least to me it is
  3. rickw

    rickw Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Oak goes with just about everything. It's really good with beef.
  4. mballi3011

    mballi3011 Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Oak is a good wood I hear it lighte then most and is fine if you want just a kiss of the smokey flavor.
  5. john3198

    john3198 Smoking Fanatic

    Thanks, guys. Will try it.

    This is stick firewood. I assume I should remove the bark (heard it makes things bitter) before I cut it into chunks. Correct?
  6. rickw

    rickw Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I leave the bark on.
  7. grampyskids

    grampyskids Meat Mopper SMF Premier Member

    I will be happy to take it off your hands. In CA oak is the preferred wood for smoking
  8. dutch

    dutch Smoking Guru Staff Member Administrator Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I use oak for firing up the Lang and use hickory, cherry, and/or maple for flavor.
  9. solaryellow

    solaryellow Limited Mod Group Lead

    I did my first oak brisket last week. I did take off the bark and then cut it into chunks for my UDS but the flavor was great. I liked it better than hickory for the brisket. It had a more creamy/buttery taste to me than hickory if that makes any sense.
  10. I smoke everything on oak, as that is the prevalent hardwood around here. I use stick firewood. I cut it into chunks 5ish inches on a miter/chop saw and then split it with a demo claw and hammer.

    It gives a great flavor... very forgiving as well... as I occasionaly have been a flag flying member of the Order Of the White Smoke with my homegrown smoking contraptions!

    I think temperature control is key to the brisket, not wood choice. Treat her good over the long haul and she will return the favor. Straight lump hardwood would even impress most.

    I even smoked some barley on oak for a batch of stout I am brewing soon...
  11. fire it up

    fire it up Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I'm with Dutch on this one, I use oak for my heat and add additional wood for flavoring.
    Will work great for a brisket but if you have hickory I would add a bit of that for a good deep smoke flavor, brisket is one of those smokes that can really handle and benefit from a good heavy flavored smoke like hickory or mesquite.
  12. treegje

    treegje Master of the Pit

    80% of my smoke wood are oak
  13. john oak is a vary good to smoke with just about any food if u would to like swap some mes. letme now
  14. txbbqman

    txbbqman Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    John, I am a couple of hours north of you in Bryan / College Station.

    When I do my briskets I only use Oak and Pecan. After many years of trial and error with different woods, I, my family, and my friends all agreed the oak / pecan combination was the best. Of course this will depend on your personal tastes.

    Best of luck to you and if you ever need more wood, let me know, we have a great organization up here that sells wood for a decent price and it is for a good cause
  15. I agree that mixing pecan or hickory with the oak will give the better result.
  16. john3198

    john3198 Smoking Fanatic

    redneck - might be. What do you have to trade?

    Texbbq - thanks. Will porbably look you up early next year. I have to be in Bryan/CS for an antique car tour in April and will probably make some scouting trips prior.
  17. jjmrascal

    jjmrascal Smoke Blower

    Agreed! Oak is my primary wood for the same reason (locally available) and it is the main wood used where I grew up (Lee County, Tx) for the same reasons. Hard to mess up with it, but not impossible...esp. with brisket. So that is why ChefMike is right. Keep the temps low(200*-220*) if you can and use a LITTLE SMOKE OVER A LONG PERIOD of time instead of a lot over a short period. So depending what you are cooking on, that is why lump charcoal is best with a little wood for light smoke.

    It should be noted that I am not of the foiling school so if you do foil, you will not have such oversmoking problems and can probably get away with bit more heat and smoke. I encourage you to try it both ways as you have time and see what works for you. Above all remember the main idea of any of this...HAVE FUN!
  18. capt dan

    capt dan Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Oak is great for brisket! I use oak for all smokes as a base wood. It makes great coals( I use a stickburner). Add to it your flavor wood of choice, and your all set.
    I cook packers at 245-260 all the time, and it works just fine, these packers take 8-10 hrs.

    after a couple hrs rest, they slice up pretty nicely!

    As You can see, these briskets are not dry, even if cooked at 240-260.

    Everyone has their prefered way, and no way is the only way, but whatever works best for you, just keep searchin till you find what suites you and your smoker best.[​IMG]

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